WordPress is the best CMS on the web, and apart from few custom CMS websites, mostly all my websites are powered by WordPress. Proudly, as they say. So if it’s the best CMS, then no wonder that many web developers continue to work for its betterment with plugins and themes and millions of codes that goes behind these resources. And it’s also pretty obvious that you will be running into various trouble now and then. Well, the problem I have been running lately is that WordPress throws itself in the “Maintenance Mode” after a failed update of a plugin or theme, and it will not budge out from the error screen. It usually happens with the WordPress plugin called “Jetpack“.
Jetpack is one the best plugins out there. People like me, however, have a love/hate relationship with this plugin though. It provides so many functionalities in a single plugin, it’s beautiful. But then it slows down the website not only for the administrator but the visitors as well. Writing a blog post is so much easier, beautiful, enriched experience but it does take a toll on patience level. So, even though I hate the loading times, I still am keeping the plugin, else I will need to replace it with 10-15 substitute plugin for all the functionalities that I use. It will improve the loading time experience greatly but the peer pressure on the server while displaying my page will be huge.
Coming back to the topic, recently I have started facing the issue that whenever I update Jetpack on any of my website (And yes, this plugin’s update comes out very very often), it will first show up as a failed update. Then when you hit the Home section or try to update it again, it goes on to the White Screen of Death (Just a random name I had to give. Wink)
This is fine really. It’s a built-in “Maintenance Mode” of WordPress (without the above images, just plain boring text). It happens with every plugin. The problem is that now, I cannot access any part of my website. I can refresh hundred of times, I can try to open the homepage in new browser window or I can just try to go back and hit Home or Updates section, the end result is that I am stuck on this screen and there seems to be no way out.
What happens is that when you hit update, WordPress automatically installs a .maintenance file on your server. And even though after some time you update the plugin successfully, this file may not get removed. So you will continue to see the same message “Briefly unavailable for scheduled maintenance. Check back in a minute.”
How To Fix?
Well, the first method you can try is to remove the maintenance file.
- Login to your website using your favorite FTP program.
- In the root of your website directory, you will find the file .maintenance. Delete it.
This shall solve the program. If not, there is another way that I find painful.
It’s the browser cache. Your browser often stores the information on your computer so that it does not have to download the page again, resulting in a faster loading speed. But doing so, it sometimes stores the error page of Maintenance Mode. And clever that it is, it does not find it significant to store a new copy even after you refresh a hundred times. So all you need to do is “Clear Your Browser Cache“. This will definitely fix the issue. I honestly don’t like clearing my browser cache because of watching a lot of YouTube videos and listen to music all the time. I also do not like to clear my browsing history because then I get logged out of all the sessions on various websites. So, I really don’t like to do it, but unfortunately, this is the best fix for the WordPress Maintenance Mode error.
This problem has been very frequent in past few days. And it’s annoying really. I usually blame my Web Hosting for everything but I am not sure whose fault lies in here. It can be the Jetpack Plugin slowing down the websites or it can be because of slow web hosting. No one knows.
Hope that I was able to fix this problem for you. If you have any other solution then do not hesitate to pour out your solutions in the comment section below. Thanks